A walk through the ages, 350 years of history jam-packed into 8 hectares of ground, that’s the Company’s Garden!
“…there is a garden which the Company has had made; I should very much like to see it in a corner of Versailles. There are walks, as far as the eye can see, through orange trees and lemon trees, through the kitchen gardens, espaliers and dwarf trees, and all that intersected by streams of running water”, so wrote Abbé de Choisy in 1685.
Today, you will explore a greatly transformed garden as you follow the shrill cry of Hadeda ibises and Egyptian geese, gambol with the squirrels, sit quietly in the shade of ancient trees and contemplate the story of the Cape. Meet Queen Victoria, Governor Grey, Jan Smuts, Cecil John Rhodes, Sir Henry Lukin, Castor and Pollux. Imagine heated arguments in the National Parliament; enjoy the quiet of the National Library; marvel at exhibits in the Art Gallery and Museum and, if you are lucky enough, you may bite into a pear of the oldest fruit tree in the garden, the Saffron Pear.
Houses of Parliament, National Library, Tuinhuys, National Art Gallery, SA Museum, Gardens Synagogue, Delville Wood Memorial
This tour starts next to the Jan Smuts statue in front of the Slave Lodge at the top of Adderley Street. Parking is available on Queen Victoria Street, at the Taj Hotel Garage or at the African Pride "15 on Orange" Hotel on Orange Street near the SA Museum.
Alternatively, you may choose to travel by bus or train: the MyCiti Bus Station and Cape Town Railway Station are situated on lower Adderley Street. From there it is a short walk up to the Company’s Garden.
Places to stop along the way:
South African National Gallery, South African Museum, The Company's Garden Restaurant near the Rhodes statue
Best time to walk:
The Company’s Garden is open every day, except for one day in early February when it’s the opening of Parliament. Opening times are: 07h30 to 20h30 (summer) and 07h00 to 19h00 (winter).
Recommended visiting times are between 09h00 and 16h00 from Monday to Saturday. The Garden is fairly deserted on Sundays and therefore, less safe.
Government Avenue remains open at all times.
Beware of pickpocketing and beggars.
Allow at least an hour for this walk, as there are lots of stops along the way.
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